Sunday, December 7, 2014

NextGen Genealogy: The DNA Connection

The more I learn about the publishing industry, the more confused I get.

As some of you know the official release date for my new book, NextGen Genealogy: The DNA Connection, was November 30th.  

If you pre-ordered it from the publisher ABC-Clio, you probably already have the physical version in hand. Amazon started allowing Kindle downloads last Sunday, but as of this morning does not yet have the paper copy in stock. Barnes and Noble has been offering the Nook version all week. 

Next comes the matter of price. On the publisher's site the price has consistently been $40 for the physical book. If readers email me, InfoDoc [AT], I can send you a discount code from the publisher that will give you a 20% discount. That will make the price $32 before shipping. 

Amazon originally offered the paper copy for $40 but has recently lowered that to $38. With Amazon's pre-order guarantee, any of you who have placed orders there should get it at that price and you may get free shipping if you have a Prime account.

Over on the e-book side, Amazon has been offering the Kindle version for $35.99. Barnes & Noble started out offering the Nook version for about $23 but quickly changed its price to the current $30. Although the publisher also offers an e-book version, you probably should not be interested unless you are a library that plans to offer the book to your patrons from your own server.

Then comes the description of the book. Some of you may know that the information about books that you see online generally was created before the book was written. It was created by the publisher soon after the contract was signed. In the current example, all three online sources mistakenly agree that the book has 136 pages. The actual physical book I have in hand has 173 pages including the index. The lower number was the publisher's guess to use a place holder before the manuscript was received. Such information takes on a life of its own.

Another example of information taking on a life of its own is the co-authorship of CeCe Moore. CeCe was originally contracted to participate in this book project. Based on that the publisher originally created a cover that included her name. Initial information including her name was included in the publisher's catalogs and was sent to others including Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Then CeCe's career as a DNA consultant for television programs and her independent consulting work rocketed at a pace that forced her to withdraw from this book project at a very early stage. A new version of the cover was created and the publisher no longer mentions her on its site. I was able to get Amazon to remove reference to her authorship. However, the Kindle division appears to operate in a different universe than does the print division of Amazon. The short version of this saga is that you will still see CeCe mentioned by Kindle and Nook.

Thank you for indulging me in this rant. Perhaps this will make you a more informed consumer as you contemplate purchasing this and other books.

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